How Do Travel Agents Make Money On Airline Tickets: Best 8 Ways

How do travel agents make money on airline tickets! Airlines sell tickets at their prices, often the lowest they can get. Travel agents don’t make money off of airline tickets.

Instead, travel agents sell hotels, and car rental agencies sometimes offer products.

Travel agents may also negotiate with airlines for better prices on specific flights or give you a discount on your flight if you book a hotel room or other trip through them.

This article will explain how travel agents make money and give you examples of how they can help you save money.

Retired people typically don’t need travel agents as much as working people. On the other hand, retired people may have the luxury of travelling the world without spending a lot of money.

Travel agents are an excellent resource for planning and purchasing trips and vacations. Among other things, they can help you book tee times at golf courses, find car rentals when you’re renting a car, plan an affordable trip to visit relatives.

Even book an inexpensive room in another country if your own country’s airline won’t fly there.

How Do Travel Agents Make Money On Airline Tickets

Travel agents work for a commission. It is usually listed on your travel agent’s website. In general, the commission ranges from 5 to 15 per cent of the trip’s total cost.

Also, keep in mind that even if a company doesn’t have an office where you live, there is still a possibility that they have an office somewhere near you.

How do travel agents make money on airline tickets
How do travel agents make money on airline tickets

If you are going to travel overseas, it might be helpful if you talk to someone at your local travel agency about any visa requirements for your destination country.

Below is how travel agents make money on airline tickets

1. Service Fees

If you are booking a ticket through a travel agent, they may charge you a fee for scheduling the flight. This is known as a service fee.

The amount of the service charge will vary depending on what airline you’re flying, whether or not it’s a domestic or international flight and where you are flying to and from.

Sometimes an agent will get part of the service charge from the airline, but sometimes they’ll have to pay it out of pocket.

2. Commission

A travel agent may get part of any money you pay. They’ll take a commission from the airline.

For example, if you book a ticket on Emirates, one of the largest airlines in the world and a top 10 favourite for international travellers, for an $800 round trip to Dubai.

You pay $100 for the booking fee and $50 for airfares (the agent’s share). That’s a commission of $150. Commission fees vary based on what airlines an agent works with.

3. Handling Fees

If a travel agent has trouble getting you a ticket, they may get charged a certain amount of money by the airline for “handling” the problem.

For example, if they can’t get you a ticket on Emirates and you have to go through another travel agency, the airline may charge that agency $100 for handling your request.

If that same agency can’t get you on Emirates, they’ll be charged by another airline company. That fee is typical $200 by another airline company.

4. Overhead Costs

Travel agents charge airlines a “percentage” of the money they take on airline tickets. For example, if they sell you a ticket on Emirates Airways, they’ll get 10% (one-tenth) of the price.

They’ll take their commission before they get to that. The remaining percentage is money that goes to the airline’s overhead costs. That way, an airline can remain profitable and not gouge its customers.

5. Cancellation Fees

If you have to cancel your reservation for whatever reason, you’ll be charged a non-refundable fee by most airlines.

It’s a service charge by the airline, and it doesn’t matter which agency sold you the ticket or what the reason is to cancel your trip.

6. Advertising Fees

Most travel agencies use a third-party company for advertising their products and services online. This usually costs between $100 and $200 per month.

The travel agency pays this fee out of pocket.

7. Facilitation Fees

Some airlines, like Emirates, will charge travel agents handling fees for each ticket they sell to that airline.

This is another obstacle that a good travel agent can help you overcome.

8. Miscellaneous Fees

A travel agent will charge a fee for all other services like finding airline tickets and any other products.

The fee is usually around one to two percent of the trip’s total cost.

What Is The Difference Between Reservation And Ticketing Fees?

Reservation Fees

Reservation Fees are paid to the airline’s travel agent to reserve a space on the flight. A reservation fee is typically a flat rate that’s not based on distance.

That means no matter where you go. It will cost the same amount of money.

Ticketing Fees

The travel agent charges ticketing fees to get you on the airplane. The fees vary between airlines and agents, but they typically range from $25 to $100.

If a ticketing fee is due, it will be included in your final itinerary.

Is It Cheaper To Book Flights Through A Travel Agent?

If you want to save money, booking a flight through your travel agent is not the best way to go. Instead, you should do things like check airlines’ websites and compare prices for yourself; these are often cheaper than booking through a travel agent.

However, if you have no idea where you want to go, don’t mind paying extra for a service or need help planning a trip from start to finish, then booking through an agency is probably the better option.

Do Airlines Pay Travel Agents?

Yes, some airlines pay travel agencies a commission for every customer they book. However, the amount of money you’ll have to pay for the ticket is diminished by that amount.

If a travel agency charges more than $20 for booking tickets, it’s best to do your homework and find an agency that doesn’t overcharge.

Some travel agencies will give you a promotional discount if you book through them; this can be anywhere between 1% and 50% off your flight or hotel stay. This is a great reason to book your travel agency.

How Much Discount Do Travel Agents Get?

Most airlines are pretty generous with travel agent discounts. In Europe, for example, most airlines pay around 20% off the ticket price.

If you travel to a very popular destination and book a flight through your agency, the discount can be even more generous.

Some travel agencies will offer you an additional discount if you book with them via an affiliated website or if you let them book your flight for you using their office phone number.

How Much Do Travel Agents Usually Charge?

When booking with a travel agent, you’ll usually be charged around $50 for domestic US tickets and up to $100 for international tickets. Some agencies may scam you by charging a high fee, or they may not do much more than what you can do online.

You’ll want to compare travel agencies based on the quality of their services and the price of their tickets.

It’s a good idea to see if the agency charges any fees for refundable or changeable tickets. If a travel agent charges more than $100 for booking your ticket, it’s best to start looking for another one.


In many ways, travel agents make money on airline tickets. They find the best deals, and they’re hard workers. While they charge travel agents’ fees, those fees are usually offset by promotional discounts, special rates or the commissions they get from airlines.

In some cases, buying a ticket through a travel agent can save you money or get you to where you want to go faster.

If you have no idea what destination to pick or want somebody else to take care of your itinerary for a few days, then booking through an agency is probably the better option.

We hope you find them helpful information, and if you have any questions, feel free to comment below.

Thank you so much for being with us.

Have a nice trip!

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